The comparisons of St. Louis Rams rookie running back Todd Gurley and Vikings veteran running back Adrian Peterson have already started at Winter Park.
Less than 24 hours after the Vikings improved to 5-2 with a 23-20 victory over Chicago, cornerback Captain Munnerlyn said Gurley is a young version of Peterson.
“Todd Gurley, he’s special,” Munnerlyn said. “He’s Adrian Peterson all over again. … Me being a South Carolina guy, of course I’ve seen [Gurley] run up and down the field against South Carolina a couple times. We know we’ve got a tough task at hand, but I know our defensive linebackers are ready for it.”
The comparisons to Peterson started when Gurley became a standout at Georgia and in the SEC, and he’s carried that momentum into his first NFL season. He made his pro debut with six carries for nine yards in Week 3 and then quickly became one of the top rushers in the league.
Gurley rushed for an average of 141.5 yards with three touchdowns over the Rams’ last four games. He ran 20 times for 133 yards and one touchdown in Sunday’s 27-6 win over San Francisco.
“This guy is big. A lot of guys don’t realize how big he is,” Munnerlyn said of the 6-1, 227-pound Gurley. “He’s got the speed. He can hit you with the home-run speed. So he’s a young Adrian Peterson, but I like our Adrian Peterson better.”
Peterson’s 633 rushing yards are the third-most in the NFL, Gurley’s 575 yards are fifth. However, Peterson has 140 carries compared to Gurley’s 94, giving the rookie the best yards-per-attempt average (6.1) in the league.